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Tehran warns Washington to stay away from tankers going to Venezuela

Authorities in Tehran has warned Washington to stay away from Iranian tankers going to Venezuela, just as the Iranian Noor New Agency reported on Friday that any U.S. attempt to disrupt an Iranian fuel shipment to Venezuela will have face repercussions.

“In the early hours of Saturday morning, local time, in response to reports that American warships were sailing towards the Caribbean, the United States intends, like pirates, to create insecurity in international waterways. It will create a serious risk and will certainly not pass without repercussions,” the Noor Agency said, as quoted by Reuters in an exclusive report .

A senior official in the Trump administration said that the United States is considering measures it could take in response to a fuel shipment that Iran sent to crisis-ridden Venezuela. The official, who asked not to be named, said that Washington is “with a great degree of certainty” that the government of Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro pays Iran with tons of gold.

According to ship tracking data from Revitalive Icon, at least one tanker loaded with fuel sailed from an Iranian port towards Venezuela, which could help the country alleviate its severe shortages.

It is worth noting that the Iranian ambassador to Caracas Hajjahullah Sultani has denied the authenticity of some Western media reports about the transportation of 9 tons of gold from Venezuela to Iran. He described the recent Bloomberg allegations that Venezuela had transferred 9 tons of gold to Iran in exchange for its help to revive gasoline refineries as rumors.

Sultani said: “I deny the validity of what has been reported … This is a baseless rumor. In fact, it is a media trap that is being spread and is a totally false allegation.”

Iran and Venezuela are both under the Trump administration's severe economic sanctions aiming at crippling the duo.

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